Vocus taps Nokia for Pacific cable rollout

SYDNEY, 05 JULY 2018 (PACNEWS) – The Vocus Group has signed a contract with Alcatel Submarine Networks to build a 4000-kilometre subsea cable linking the Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea and Australia.

In a statement on Wednesday, Vocus said the project, known as the Coral Sea Cable System, would boost international connectivity and provide high-speed telecommunications capacity. It will link Honiara, Port Moresby and Sydney and is expected to be completed late next year.

The deal was originally awarded to Chinese telecommunications equipment company Huawei Telecommunications. The Solomon Islands then changed its mind after the intervention of the spy agency, the Australian Secret Intelligence Service. Australian taxpayers will foot most of the $200 million cost of the cable, with the Solomons and the PNG making small contributions.

Vocus said the cable would offer an ultimate capacity of at least 20Tbps for each of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands to connect to Australia.

Also included in the project is construction of a domestic sub-sea network within Solomon Islands, connecting Honiara to outer provinces.

Vocus chief executive and managing director Kevin Russell said: “This is the third submarine cable project that Vocus Group has undertaken with ASN since 2014.

“Building this critical infrastructure on behalf of the Australian Government will bring fast, reliable and affordable connectivity to Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands, together with the associated economic and social benefits.”

Alcatel Submarine Networks president Philippe Piron said: “We are proud to support Vocus Group with the Coral Sea Cable project.

“This new contract validates our approach to provide systems with ultimate performance and reliability to our customers, enabling capacity and connectivity enhancements for end-users, as we continue to expand our presence in the Asia-Pacific region.”

Vocus and ASN are also partners in building the Australia-Singapore Cable, a 4600km, 40Tbps sub-sea cable linking Australia to Singapore through Jakarta and Christmas Island, and scheduled for completion in the first quarter of FY19.

More Stories